Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a neurological state that can be described as an impairment in the social, behavioral, and communication spheres. Students with ASDs may find it challenging to enter college after high school graduation and adhere to new social and organizational demands (Clark, 2013). They must adjust to a strange college environment, live and study independently, and develop relationships with other students. If such students do not receive support from their parents, friends, educators, and other supportive individuals during the transition process, they will be less likely to succeed academically. The purpose of this dissertation paper will be to study the impact of a transition process on post-secondary students with autism and discover the most effective supporting institutional practices for such students.
The dissertation paper will answer several research questions related to autism in post-secondary schools. First, it would be challenging to know what problems young people with ASDs face when they graduate from high school and enter post-secondary institutions. Moreover, the question about the critical thinking abilities of such students should also be answered. If students with ASD have problems understanding some academic concepts, it will be useful to explore the main methods of encouragement for them. Another question will be related to the impact of ASD students’ social skills on their performance. Some individuals may be more willing to communicate with other people, while some persons may feel nervous in public. Thus, educators should know how to find an individual approach for every student with ASD and improve their learning outcomes.
One more thought-provoking topic is academic strengths associated with autism. People with neurological impairments may have diverse fortes, including their ability to concentrate on a single subject for a long time. Moreover, students with ASDs tend to adhere to the rules, so educators can use these qualities to help students perform their academic tasks successfully. Clear instructions, strict order, concrete structure – all these aspects of academic assignments may be helpful for students with ASD. Thus, the dissertation paper will try to answer the following research question: What academic strengths and weaknesses do students with autism possess, and how can these qualities be used to improve their learning outcomes?
The subject of autism in post-secondary education (PSE) is relevant and important because of the increased attendance of such students in the PSE setting. Even though many undergraduates with ASD attend post-secondary schools, they often cannot graduate due to academic difficulties, social problems, lack of support, and other issues. Therefore, the main barriers to their study and ways of accommodation and support for such students should be investigated. Support may play a crucial role in autist students’ academic success, so this question would be researched in detail. The purpose of the paper will be to find the most useful and successful supporting activities and services for students with ASDs.
Before conducting research, the literature on autism in post-secondary schools and other subjects mentioned above will be reviewed. An exploratory approach will be chosen for the research work. Disability service professionals will be interviewed using online Google forms. Moreover, an observational study may also be useful for this research. First-year post-secondary school students with ASDs will be observed, and their transition process and social and academic adjustment will be evaluated. If direct observations are unavailable or impossible, data from previous research studies will be used to complete the assessment process. Finally, the study’s barriers, limitations, and implications will be discussed, and recommendations for future research will be given.
Clark, J. (2013). J. Thierfeld Brown, L. Wolf, L. King, and R. Kukiela Bork: The parents guide to college for students on the autism spectrum. Journal of Autism & Developmental Disorders, 43, 1989-1990. Web.